Any time you play a tabletop game with a new group, you’re learning about what kind of players they are. These are players that love to roleplay and immerse themselves in the world and story that you create. And then there are players that prefer to fight and enjoy the adrenaline rush that accompanies it.
Planning your campaign should start with determining what kind of players you have. In the event that your players prefer combat over roleplaying scenarios, then here’s how you should write your campaign.
Establish a Setting Heavy with Conflict
One of the best settings for any group that loves combat is war. It’s relatively easy to write, too. All you need is two different factions, at least, and a reason for the war. Perhaps it’s over territory. Maybe it’s a resource war. It can even be as trivial as a perceived threat or offense to someone’s daughter.
Your setting doesn’t always have to be as grand as a war either. Even a smaller scale feud between neighbors might be enough to launch the players into a combat-heavy campaign. Perhaps a nearby bandit camp is wreaking havoc on the village. Maybe there’s a marauding band that regularly terrorizes those within their territory.
There are tons of settings you can customize your fit your player’s characters even more. Having the right one can launch a successful campaign that satisfies your players and makes DMing that much easier.
Encourage Your Players to Choose the Right Skills
When it comes to combat, character balance is important. The party that has their bases covered tend to live longer. That being said, you should never discourage a player from playing a character that they’re invested in. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if the party has a healer or a tank if everyone is having fun.
You can help your players make combat-oriented characters by choosing the right skills and backgrounds. Whether you’re playing Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder, Warhammer, or any type of wargaming, you have tons of options and builds to try. Your players should emphasize things like strength, dexterity, and constitution based on the weapons they want to use and their style of play.
Magic users should dump most of their points into their magic-based attribute and anything else that will help beef up their defenses.
Certain skills like Survival or Medicine may be more useful in a combat-focused campaign than others. Your group likely won’t be doing a lot of persuading or history checks in this particular campaign. Help them choose skills that will actually benefit them in the story.
Dig Deep Into Character Backstories for Conflict
One final tip you should use to craft a campaign for combat-based players is to have them create in-depth backgrounds. Even if their character is all about tackling and defeating the biggest monsters they can find, they should still have a reason for it. What launched the character?
Perhaps their family was killed by an unidentified monster. Maybe their loved one was killed. Perhaps they’re on some sort of Rite of Passage that requires true acts of heroism, bravery, or military prowess.
Once your players have designed their characters with a juicy background, you can use it to spark further ideas for conflict. You can still make your campaign personal for your players by using their character’s history. This just adds another layer of making the combat more rewarding and thrilling.
Start Planning Your Combat-Heavy Campaign
These tips can help you write a campaign that focuses primarily on combat. They can satisfy those players who just love to hit things. Do your players prefer combat or roleplaying opportunities in their campaigns? Got any more tips? Let us know in the comments!